Asian Health Officials Discuss Latest Tactics in the War on Cancer
Annual conference highlights importance of public and private sector cooperation to benefit patients
Singapore, March 17, 2016 - Countries, governments and healthcare professionals must step up cooperation to tackle rising rates of cancer in Asia and the related costs with innovative solutions, delegates said in Singapore today at the annual Economist Events Health Care Forum. Held at The Ritz-Carlton, Millenia Singapore, the event brought together more than 180 speakers and delegates from both private and public health sectors to discuss the implications of cancer incidence in Asia, cost-effective measures, and practical strategies to address the issues.
At the keynote panel on the price of policy, Chiou Shu-Ti, director-general of the Health Promotion Administration at Taiwan's Ministry of Health and Welfare said, "Sin tax reduces not only tobacco consumption in Taiwan, but also generates additional budget to improve cancer care for patients. Currently, we've allocated 11% of our budget on cancer control."
"There are 51 million people in Myanmar, and 70% of them live in rural areas. It is extremely important that we act fast to improve accessibility and affordability of healthcare services. In the past 5 years, we have increased national healthcare budget for cancer control to address the issues, specifically around prevention." said Myint Han, director-general of the Department of Medical Services in Myanmar's Ministry of Health.
In conjunction with the event, The Economist Intelligence Unit released a comprehensive report, titled "Breast Cancer in Asia: The Challenge and Response". The report, commissioned by Pfizer, includes a scorecard ranking 10 Asia-Pacific countries on their breast-cancer-control policies - including Singapore. Visit The Economist to access the report and infographic.
Presented at the forum by Charles Goddard, editorial director of The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) in the Asia-Pacific, the key findings from the report are:
With special thanks to Edelman & The Economist Events
- As younger cohorts of Asian women age, breast-cancer incidence rates in Asia are set to
- converge with the much higher ones in the West.
- Rapid changes in lifestyle, in particular to fertility patterns, carry higher breast-cancer risks and
- increased incidence of breast-cancer in these younger cohorts.
- Breast-cancer requires a multifaceted, integrated response, rather than a focus on one or a few
- specific interventions.
- Economic development and general education alone are not enough to root out the ignorance,
- fear and stigma associated with breast-cancer.